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February 9 Provost’s Lecture with Aldon Morris

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Aldon Morris

Aldon Morris is the Leon Forrest Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at Northwestern University. His interests include race, social inequality, religion, politics, theory and social movements.

Morris is the author of the award winning book, The Origins of the Civil rights Movement. In 1986 Origins won the Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Award of the American Sociological Association. He is co-editor of the volumes, Frontiers in Social Movement Theory and Opposition Consciousness. He is completing a book examining the sociology of W.E.B. Du Bois and his preeminent role as a founder of American sociology.

Morris is also working on a volume exploring the relationship between civil rights movements throughout the United States rather than focusing exclusively on the Southern Civil Rights Movement. In 2009 Morris won the Cox-Johnson-Frazier Award for a lifetime of research, scholarship and teaching from the American Sociological Association. Morris is a former Chair of Sociology, Director of Asian American Studies, and Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Northwestern University.

This Provost’s Lecture will be held on Thursday, February 9, at 4:00 pm in Humanities 1006.

Abstract: W.E.B. Du Bois was one of a handful of scholars of the 20th century with a sustained global impact on sociological, literary, and political knowledge. In this talk, Morris will draw on evidence from his forthcoming book demonstrating that Du Bois was the founding father of scientific sociology in the United States; that is, American scientific sociology was founded in a segregated black university by a black man. This research disconfirms the accepted wisdom that American scientific sociology was founded by elite white sociologists in elite white universities. This talk will explore the methods Du Bois pioneered and his novel theorizing that they laid the foundations for subsequent sociological analysis, and will offer a radical revision of the dynamic forces that undergird knowledge production in social science.

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